We've been dancing around my dream house for a couple of weeks now. And it's no secret that I am a little spooked by money and decisions. We walked away from it today. And I am relieved. I am okay with our decision.
On paper, it sure looks like we walked for piddly little stuff, but it's been a square peg in a round hole from day one, and I have been the one trying to force it to work.
We looked at an auction house a month or so ago. We also were offered the chance to buy a new-to-us minivan. I told Tom then (before emotions got involved) that it was one or the other - he really shouldn't let me say yes to the minivan and the house in the same short timeframe. And the house was 1977 original everything, and 4 levels of stairs. Minivan bought, and I love it, even if I don't get to drive it much. Tom is the minivan dad.
A couple from church have moved, and their much newer house was on the market. 3 bedroom ranch, stairs optional. A full basement that I never have to visit when I am 65 and he is 80. But past the very tip top of my comfort level, and would take all of our savings and our land assets just to get into it. I tempted fate and looked and lusted anyway. We found a buyer for our 5 acres in the country (why did I think that was a good idea? Who the heck is mowing that, really?) and it seemed like an okay thing to look again and progress. And then I saw my first payroll-deducted check in the grad school world, and it was harsh.
And the couch broke along with the washer eating our clothes in the same couple days.
My dad brought me a friend's bedroom set, and I helped Tom move it into the garage, 30 feet and 1 big step into the storeroom. And it was all I could do to help him. Moving seemed to become a much larger task when I tested my arm that little bit and realized I am gimpier than I care to admit.
The quote above came across my facebook news feed in the midst of negotiating. I don't like how Dave Ramsey earned his money either time, but he must be doing a few things right. If we continued to force the house and I was diagnosed with mets next month (and yes, while crappy cancer is gone, it's still recent enough to dance around in my head full of "what if's"), I would jeopardize my family's security. Our safety net would be in a house that would tear me apart. I can't do that. Tom's too close to retirement.
And I sat and calculated and negotiated, both their point of view and mine. I have no idea what their equity is, but their purchase price is publicly available and the standard 6% realtor's fees, and we were asking them to take at least a $12,000 hit. I might be guilty of having a conscience.
And Tom saw how much I wanted to make it all work but it was stressing me at the same time. There are very few carbs left in our house, and not a single ounce of chocolate. It was a nutella from the jar, banana optional, kind of few weeks. I was in tears last night over a contact down the drain - I can't take money from savings to buy a new pair if it's not in the p trap - taking apart the sink is not what my husband needs to be doing at 2230 - so stupid of me to not plug the drain that I made him fix for me for this very reason a few months ago. The contact was rescued, but the feelings remained.
And today, I will write my 12 page paper. Plan a little vacation. Pay some bills that I couldn't map out without a little help from savings. Progress with the land sale. Put a little more in savings. Be an adult with the reality of my life. Love our little house and the blessings it has offered us in keeping me at home more than at work in this season of kid-raising and cancer recovery. Mow the yard before it rains the rest of the week. Work on that college fund that Kid #2 needs, that I promised myself this was the year, at least til a truck transmission stole it.
And quit trying to put square pegs in round holes, cause eventually God gets his point across.